If you need a bike path – make your own

Cyclists in Rome frustrated by the absence of a cycle lane through a tunnel in the city have taken matters into their own hands by painting it themselves.

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According to La Repubblica, which has a gallery of pictures of the cycle lane, it took campaigners 45 minutes to paint it in the Santa Bibiana tunnel between Esquilino and San Lorenzo last Sunday.

The tunnel takes riders under the Italian capital’s main train station, Roma Termini, avoiding a long detour, and cyclists are appealing to the city’s mayor install a permanent cycle path there.

In open letter to the mayor, Ignazio Marino, himself a keen cyclist, they said: “We get around without a car, even taking our children to school, at our own risk and danger, in a city made for cars.

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“We’re aware of the big problems that the city’s administration has to tackle – and traffic is one of the foremost – and of the scant resources available, of the conflicts that give rise to actions aimed at containing motor vehicles.

“But despite everything, we believe that there are a lot of things you can do for people who choose to leave the car behind and choose to get around by bike.”

In 2011, cycling campaigners in Mexico City similarly took the initiative by painting a 5km “guerrilla” bike path there.

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